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MixMob’s Co-Founder on Shaking Up Web3 Gaming


Could you tell me a bit about yourself, your background and how you entered the web3 space?

Pavel: My background is in video games. I’ve worked with Xbox, EA, Activision, Nintendo, Disney and more doing all sorts of things; business development, licensing, M&A – even studio management.

In 2016, I went full-time in crypto, just like most others back then. I got enamoured by the Bitcoin whitepaper – it combined everything I’ve been into since I was a kid.

It’s maths. Okay. I was good at math. It’s money. You always want money. It’s geopolitics. I was into political science. It’s science fiction. I was that kid into science fiction. I just dug deeper and deeper and thought, “Okay, this is awesome.” – and that’s how I got into crypto.

How did the idea for MixMob come about?

Back then, I always believed crypto and gaming could come together, I just didn’t see any real value in it yet. Once Axie took off in the summer of 2021 and showed that it could work, I called Simon [Vieira, MixMob CEO & Game Director] and said, “Hey, check out Axie. Do you think we could do better than that, with a talented team?” He goes, “I think we can.”

I said, “Okay. Well, why don’t you put a core team together? Come up with a game concept and pitch it to me like I’m a game publisher,” like how we used to when we worked at EA and Activision together. He goes, “Okay.”

It all snowballed from there. Fortunately, because I’ve been around since 2016 building Bluzelle (a decentralised storage solution) in Asia, I was able to contact a bunch of angels I know and raise the money we needed within two days. So that’s how it came about.

The team building MixMob includes a raft of AAA talent. Could you tell us more?

With DeFi, you can get any coders anywhere. Music, video games, movies; those all require talent. It’s not the tech that makes those things good, it’s the people with the talent to create great content.

People forget that. A lot of VCs were fooled by people who had a nice pitch deck, paid somebody to make a media trailer, and then said, “Oh, we’ve got to go make this game now.” – and the VCs had no idea how these games are even made.

We’ve assembled a talented team who’ve done everything from mobile, social and casual games to titles such as Halo, FIFA, Battlefield and hardcore AAA games. Our team knows how to work with others, can build through anything, and can learn new technologies fast.

A “card strategy racing game” is a unique combination! What is MixMob like to play? What popular titles could you compare it to?

It’s Mario Kart mixed with Hearthstone and Magic: The Gathering. It’s a racing game with card strategy, real-money gaming, gambling and DeFi features too.

In MixMob, you acquire MixBots through capsules. They’re your Tamagotchis, your R2D2, your Wall-E. You enter them into races, where instead of focusing on mastering wheel-to-wheel racing, like in Gran Turismo or Mario Kart, the racing elements feed into the strategy you’ll use with your card deck.

Your card deck contains a range of offensive and defensive cards. Each MixBot has racing traits that make it unique, so you might want to tailor your deck to your MixBot. For example, I love to drift in Mario Kart – and I know Donkey Kong and Bowser are terrible at drifting. I can’t use them, I have to use a different character – and that’s similar to what we’re doing with these MixBots. You’ll have to trade, sell, or buy a MixBot and deck combo that suits your racing style.

We have three types of player: gamers, gamblers, and degens. Gamers play the game for the racing, gamblers place bets on who will come out on top, and degens stake tokens into our liquidity pools for a yield from each race. Degens will be motivated to bring more players to the racing arenas, and as the yield adjusts depending on the numbers of racers, they’ll have to use a lot of game theory to decide which arenas to stake into for maximum yield.

We’re not just building a game, we’re also creating a full economy that’ll keep the flywheel going.

Your Gen0 pre-sale has just sold out, with a public sale coming on January 11. Why should readers get involved in this upcoming drop?

Starting at 9am PST/5pm GMT on January 11, we’re dropping our MixBot & MXM Token Packages. Each package costs $250 USD, and contains MixBots, MXM tokens, and select bonuses. 5,000 packages are available in total.

The drop has three phases. Phase 1 is the Guaranteed Whitelist, with 500 packages reserved for the communities that have supported us so far. 5 packages can be purchased per participant, with a 10% MXM token bonus if you purchase 3 or more.

Phase 2 is the FCFS Whitelist, with 1,000 packages up for grabs, max 10 per participant, with a 10% MXM token bonus if you purchase 10. Access to this whitelist can be gained via our Discord.

Phase 3 is the Public Sale, where the remaining 3,500 packages are opened to the public, max 10 per participant.

Imagine you’re going to do the toy store as a kid. I see the Transformers’ Optimus Prime robot. I’m like, “Cool, I’m going to buy this, convince my parents.” Okay, it’s 50 bucks, let’s just say – but inside the box is a voucher for $50 of tokens. That’s how we’re positioning these MixBots. It’s less of token sale or an NFT sale, it’s more a toy sale with a token voucher.

Solana is the blockchain on everyone’s lips right now. Why did you choose Solana as the chain for MixMob?

Solana is the only blockchain that was fast enough with a usability that pertains to games. Like Simon said to me, it couldn’t be Polygon-fast, it couldn’t be Arbitrum-fast, it could only be Solana-fast. Even when the FTX blowup happened and everyone went sour on Solana, he was like, no, this is where the product needs to be. This is the best tech for it.

We had a number of calls throughout the year with Anatoly Yakovenko and Raj Gokal, the founders of Solana, and they would check in just to see what help we needed.

Solana also has a unique community. Where ETH is more like Silicon Valley – very tech-heavy and people like to really dive in – Solana is more like Los Angeles; there’s more subcultures, and it’s more about a community having fun.

What can we expect from MixMob in 2024 and beyond?

The MXM token drop (January 11) is the first key milestone. The game has been in alpha and beta long enough where the community is saying, “I really want to start earning, I want to start making money”, so we’re getting the economy up and running.

Next, mobile. The iOS and Android versions are in beta, and they’ve been pre-approved for the app stores. We’re targeting end of January, early February for a full mobile release. The game’s great on desktop, but so much more fun on mobile.

After that, we’ve got some top-tier licenses we’ve acquired that we’re going to launch as characters within the game that will likely release in Q1 as well.

The MixMob Esports League is where the governance aspect of the MXM token really goes into effect. If you were a fan of F1 and were able to partake in the expansion and growth of the sport, that’d be awesome. That’s what we’re going to do with the MXM token for the MXM Esports League.

User-generated content is also coming in 2024. Players can build items for the game, sell them and earn MXM tokens – and there will also be a Community Program for custom arenas and crews.

We’re working with a lot of communities, including BONK. We’re going to launch BONK MixBots, and we’d ultimately like a BONK Arena where $BONK holders get special privileges. We’d like to do the same thing with many communities, where they can represent & race against each other. Instead of selling land, communities will have arenas, players can vote on new arenas with new game modes, and that’s how big growth will happen.

We’ll be announcing more partnerships in the coming weeks.

Any predictions for web3 gaming and the wider blockchain space in 2024?

It takes a while to build good games. 2024 will be good because other games, not just MixMob, have learned from the games that released in the past few years. The mistakes they made, their tokenomics, the gameplay, things like that. A lot of those games that started development in 2022 and 2023 will have playable versions in 2024.

Also, it’s gaming. In mobile, Angry Birds was the one that really made everything take off and then all the other games rose after it. We don’t need five or ten games to be awesome. All you need is one or two, then it drives the rest and everybody else gets better.

Where should the community go to learn more?

Join our Discord, and follow our Twitter. To get on the FCFS Whitelist for the January 11 drop, there’s community tasks to complete in our Discord, or you can go to the website and start playing the game – there’s ways to get on to white list from there.

Even if you don’t get into the January 11 sale, once the MXM token drops, you’ll need the token to play the game, get the further yields, all that fun. If you like poker and Mario Kart, you’ll have a lot of fun with MixMob.

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